Playtech Acquires AvaTrade, Optimal Closes In On Skrill Deal

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Playtech is delighted with its $105 million acquisition of CDF trading company AvaTrade.

Online gambling software giant Playtech has announced that it’ll acquire the currency-trading platform AvaTrade for $105 million.

The move is the most recent in a string of online trading business acquisitions by Playtech as it seeks to diversify its offering beyond its casino, activities betting and poker operations, at a time as soon as the on line gambling industry is coming under stricter regulatory and burden that is fiscal.

In Playtech bought Plus500 for £460 million ($718 million) february.

Plus500, like AvaTrade, in a ‘contract-for-difference’ (CFD) broker that enables customers to take a position on markets and trade on motions of the selling price without owning those assets.

In April this year, Playtech acquired TradeFX, a trading platform and payment solutions provider, for €208 million ($230 million).

Two Million Trades per Month

Founded in 2006, AvaTrade has 20,000 registered customers who execute more than two million trades per month. The company’s total trading volumes surpass $60 billion per according to its website month.

‘The Ava Group is really a well-recognized and established online CFD broker with multiple regulatory licenses and a customer that is strong with insignificant geographic overlap using the TradeFX Group,’ said Mor Weizer, CEO of Playtech. ‘We are very excited about the opportunities for the Group arising from the mixture of the Trade FX Group and the Ava Group which we are confident will deliver term that is long for Shareholders.’

‘The acquisition of the Ava Group is another important milestone in Playtech’s technique to expand and enhance its general technology offering through numerous vertical markets,’ he added. ‘Since the present acquisition that is earnings-enhancing of and also the creation of our financials division we have desired further opportunities to broaden our reach into this straight.’

Optimal Strategy

Meanwhile, Optimal Payments has announced that it expects to complete its acquisition of rival online payment provider Skrill by the end of the month.

The business will acquire Skrill in a reverse takeover deal for €720 million ($799.7 million) and 37,493,053 brand new ordinary shares.

‘Completion of the acquisition of Skrill continues to be susceptible to regulatory approval by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority, which is anticipated to be made no later than 30 July 2015, unless the FCA exercises its statutory right to interrupt the consideration period,’ Optimal said within an statement that is official. ‘Completion of the acquisition will happen soon following the receipt of FCA approval.’

Optimal said the deal will be ‘transformational and value boosting’ for the organization, helping it to become the ‘leading payment and wallet that is digital with significant international scale and reach.’

Jackpot Digital Buys PokerTek

Finally, capping down a week that is busy the industry’s M&A lawyers, computer software provider Jackpot Digital has announced a deal that may notice it obtain all the assets of PokerTek from Multimedia for $5.4 million.

PokerTek, which builds electronic dining table games, has created approximately $3.5 million within the last year, and Jackpot Digital said the integration of its existing platform utilizing the acquired assets would ultimately enhance user-experience while increasing income for the company.

New Jersey On The Web DDoS Attacks on Regulated Sites Arrive with Bitcoin Ransom Notes

Current nj-new Jersey DDoS attacks on unnamed regulated sites were combined with a ransom note guaranteeing future, more serious attacks should businesses not comply. (Image:

DDoS (distributed denial of service) isn’t a real possibility that any online gaming company ever wishes to handle, many regulated New Jersey sites had to do exactly that last week.

New Jersey’s fledgling online gambling industry was targeted, evidently for the first-time, by these distributed attacks.

Late last week, at least four unnamed sites had been derailed by a hacker, or hackers, who flooded the sites’ bandwidths with traffic, rendering them inoperable, and ultimately taking them offline for around half an hour.

The attacks were accompanied by a ransom note for an undisclosed sum, payable in Bitcoin, with a hazard of the much more serious assault to follow.

Not Brand New, But Frustrating

DDoS attacks aren’t anything brand new for the gambling that is online, of course. In fact, they’re since old as the industry itself, but there are suggestions that incidents of the unwelcome actions have been growing. Some specialists even claim that attacks across all online industries actually doubled in 2014.

High-profile operators on the getting end this past year included Betfair, that was targeted on Grand National time, the biggest UK horse race meet of the season in terms of betting.

Attackers usually time their efforts to coincide with large events that are sporting the hope that operators will merely spend up instead than lose company. PokerStars, Unibet, and state that is swedish monopoly Svenska Spel will also be all recent victims.

Opportunities of Prosecution Slim

Despite the initial interruption, it appears that the situation is currently stable and has been effectively dealt with by the newest Jersey market’s cybersecurity groups. The battle between online gambling sites and the hackers is certainly one of mouse and cat, of strategy and counterstrategy: as security technology improves, therefore do the hackers’ efforts to breach it.

Nj-new jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement President David Rebuck said this that the matter was now being investigated by state police, the FBI, and the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, as well as his own organization week. The agencies that are various he stated, were hunting a ‘known actor’ who had ‘done this before.’

Opportunities of prosecution are slim, however. To date, only two guys have been convicted for launching DDoS attacks. Those had been two UK-based Poles who made the mistake of threatening an operator they knew actually and agreeing to meet him in a hotel room. The operator, of course, brought the authorities with him. In 2013, the pair that is hapless sentenced to 5 years in jail with a court in the united kingdom.

LVS Attack

Such assaults are maybe not limited to online gambling, of course. In February 2014, Las Vegas Sands Corporation (LVS), owned by anti-online curmudgeon Sheldon Adelson, had been afflicted by a massive cyber attack that ended up being thought to have emanated from Iran. On February 10, LVS had been plunged into chaos as computers started flatlining and servers shutting down. Difficult drives were wiped clean as malware ripped through the company’s networks.

The decision was taken to sever the multibillion dollar operation completely from the Internet as hackers began compressing and downloading batches of sensitive files, comprising everything from high-roller credit checks to details of global computer systems.

The attack caused an estimated $20 million worth of damage. The attackers later claimed their DDoS actions was in fact been prompted after hearing remarks made by Adelson in 2013 about ‘dropping the bomb’ on Iran.

NY Casino License Bidding Process Receives One Applicant

Tiago Downs, the single bidder for the 4th NY casino license, proposes an improved expansion package having neglected to impress final December. (Image:

Regulators in nyc State have slim pickings whenever they come to pick the winner of the fourth Upstate casino license in the economically deprived Southern Tier region.

Just one single contender submitted a proposal for Monday’s deadline, while a rival pulled away at the minute that is last.

The Tioga Downs racino in Nichols is the main one and only applicant for the area, by having a $195 million expansion proposal to its current facility.

The proposal that is aborted from businessman Jeffrey C. Hyman, had been pulled having been dealt ‘a fatal blow’ by their state’s Department of Environmental Conservation.

Hyman said his project would have been ‘seismic,’ which may have been what the environmental people were complaining about in the beginning, especially when you consider it has an ongoing debate about fracking in the area.


Unfortunately, Jeff Gural, owner of Tioga Downs, didn’t impress the Gaming Control Board at the original licensing hearing along with his project in December 2014, although he has since come up with an improved package.

Back then, the board recommended three casino licenses, for Monticello, in the Catskills; Schenectady; and the Finger Lakes area, snubbing the Southern Tier and Tioga Downs completely, despite having been granted the capabilities to recommend a fourth license.

Gural ended up being furious at the decision and very critical regarding the board. He argued that a casino in the Southern Tier would be perfectly rational, since the closest competitor is Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, 90 kilometers south in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania

‘It’s got nothing to do with me, i’ve enough money,’ he fumed. ‘ But the social people for the Southern Tier?’

‘And what really pisses me down,’ he continued, warming to his theme, ‘is the governor asked me to spend $800,000 of my cash to pass Local Law 1, Proposition One [on the expansion of casino gaming]. What was that all about? I mean… the thing that is whole sickening to be honest with you.’


Such had been the outcry among locals, in reality, that Governor Andrew Cuomo intervened, requesting that the Gaming Commission reconsider.

‘As this would function as last permit issued in New York State, it may excite national competition by interested parties that distribute better still applications than the first round,’ advised Cuomo. ‘If you agree to the request, the [casino board] should quickly establish a process for the 4th license that could be complete as expeditiously possible, whilst the Southern Tier needs jobs and investment now.’

The board complied, a choice it might probably now regret, itself facing a ‘bidding war’ of one and under political pressure to award a license to a man who has recently been highly critical of its decision making processes as it finds.